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Better Bioeconomy Weekly - Apr 24th 2023 🌏
This Ain’t It, Aubrey.
WORD BUFFET 📖
🇮🇱 Aleph Farms Is Set to Launch Its First Product Under Its New ‘Aleph Cuts’ Label
The cultivated Petit Steak, grown from non-modified cells of a premium Angus cow, is expected to launch in Singapore and Israel later this year pending regulatory approval.
Aleph Farms has received top accolades from the World Economic Forum, UNESCO, and the UN Food Systems Summit for its contributions to climate leadership, including a net-zero commitment made in 2020.
Having raised $105 million in 2021 in a Series B funding round, the company is working closely with regulatory agencies worldwide as it prepares for the commercial launch of its first product.
🥩 Upside Foods Announced a New Range of Cultivated Ground Meat Products
As the company waits for regulatory approval, they are launching ground chicken for use in a range of products, including sausages, sandwiches, and dumplings, in addition to its previously announced chicken filet.
Upside has developed a breakthrough chicken cell line for use in suspension cell culture that could substantially reduce the cost of production, bringing the cultivated meat closer to price parity with conventional.
The company's EPIC factory in California is capable of producing 400,000 pounds of cultivated chicken per year.
🍔 Motif Foodworks Announced a Limited-Edition Release of Its Debut Direct-To-Consumer Plant-Based Product
Motif FoodWorks has previously created a range of vegan proteins for its B2B partners and retailers, with private label ranges, including Motif MoBeef, MoPork, and MoChicken. Motif BeefWorks plant-based burger patties will be their first DTC product.
The company has developed novel ingredients, Hemami and Appetex, which provide the burgers with their rich, meat-like flavor and texture.
Hemami is created using precision fermentation via a yeast-based heme protein that is identical to bovine heme, and was granted Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) status from the US FDA in 2021.
🧫 Ayana Bio Unveils First Ingredients Made Using Plant Cell Culture
Ayana Bio uses plant cell culture to produce a consistent supply of high-value botanical ingredients without supply chain challenges and headaches.
Plant cell culture is particularly attractive when it is too expensive or impractical to extract bioactives from fully-grown plants, and when they cannot be expressed by microbes using precision fermentation, according to CEO Frank Jaksch.
The company will initially use contract manufacturing partners to produce high-value botanicals for dietary supplements using plant cell culture technology. They plan to scale up to the food industry, which requires higher volumes and are working on scaling up.
🌾 Pivot Bio’s Microbe-Based Nitrogen-Fixing Product Replaced Synthetic Nitrogen and Reduced On-Farm Emissions
Pivot Bio's N-OVATOR pilot program allowed growers using its microbe-based nitrogen-fixing product to replace synthetic nitrogen and reduce on-farm emissions, resulting in more than 80,000 metric tons of CO2 equivalent avoided on 725,000 acres of land.
The success of N-OVATOR reveals that growers want to avoid synthetic nitrogen, recognizing that it causes harm to the environment, but they need alternatives that maintain yield and provide ROI, which Pivot Bio's product can provide.
Pivot Bio's Proven 40 product, which replaces about 20% of synthetic nitrogen, is scalable and has a "plug-and-play" nature, making it easy for growers to implement, potentially helping agrifood corporates reduce Scope 3 emissions and provide sustainability benefits to the growers.
🐷 Momentum Foods Blends Plant-Based Meat with Animal Components for Improved Sensory Quality and Affordability
Operating under the brand name Paul’s Table, the first product, BBQ pulled pork alternatives, will launch at price parity with animal meat products in the US West and Midwest, with more products to follow.
The products are 90% plant-based, made with ingredients such as soy and brown rice, and blended with animal ingredients like collagen and fat to provide improved sensory qualities.
Paul's Table aims to provide an option with most of the environmental benefits of fully plant-based products but with improved taste and texture and the hope is to convince omnivores who are unwilling or unable to pay more for plant-based alternatives.
🤝 Syngenta and Ginkgo Bioworks Partner to Support Syngenta’s Ongoing Seeds R&D Pipeline Efforts
Ginkgo Bioworks and Syngenta Seeds have formed a research partnership focused on discovering novel plant traits to inform future seed trait development to improve crop health.
Syngenta will utilize Ginkgo's protein engineering capabilities and ultra high-throughput screening technologies to accelerate their efforts to develop innovative plant traits.
Ginkgo stated that the partnership exemplifies the value of cross-pollinating expertise and capabilities across diverse industries to tackle agriculture's greatest challenges.
🍄 Quorn's Parent Company to Expand Availability of Mycoprotein to Other Food Producers
Marlow Foods is making its mycoprotein ingredient available to other food and beverage manufacturers, after producing it for over 40 years.
Mycoprotein is rich in protein and fiber, low in saturated fat, and has been found to boost healthy gut bacteria while reducing intestinal genotoxins that cause bowel cancer. It also uses 90% less land and water than beef and generates 98% fewer carbon emissions.
The move is part of Marlow's mission to become a net-positive business by 2030 and provide eight billion servings of mycoprotein in that year. The ingredient will initially launch in Europe and has the potential to create more sustainable versions of other applications, such as dairy alternatives.
🇬🇧 U.K. Government’s Largest Investment in Sustainable Protein Yet: £12 Million ($14.9 M) for Scaling up Cultivated Meat
The Cellular Agriculture Manufacturing (CARMA) research program, led by the University of Bath, will focus on tissue-engineered cellular agriculture to reduce the climate impact and air pollution associated with meat production and requires up to 90% less land than conventional animal protein.
The CARMA research program aims to engage consumers and stakeholders to ensure sustainable, social, and economic gains for the country's food and farming industry, complementing the government's £120 million ($148.9 M) Food Strategy efforts.
The Good Food Institute Europe think tank applauded the announcement, calling it a "seismic move" in the development of a sustainable protein industry in the U.K.
🍄 eniferBio Secures €11 Million ($12.2 M) Funding to Scale Production of Novel Fungi Protein Powder
The funding will be used to scale up production of the company's mycoprotein powder, which has a carbon footprint 50 times smaller than beef and doesn't require land or water resources like crops such as soy.
eniferBio uses fungi to create the protein powder and can upcycle food and forest byproducts to make it and they aim to tackle the challenges of the aquaculture industry, which heavily relies on soy in fish feed.
The company is working on Novel Food approval from the E.U. and other markets to scale up to "thousands of tons" of mycoprotein per year.
🦠 Land-Heavy Agriculture Is Unsustainable, Precision Fermentation Is the Answer
Precision fermentation can recreate compounds in chocolate and coffee and produce alternatives for edible fats like pork lard or palm oil, requiring up to 90% less land than conventional agriculture.
This technology can be used to create animal food protein alternatives without the environmental cost of conventional agriculture, which takes up close to half of the planet's habitable land and is responsible for deforestation and wildlife habitat loss.
Precision fermentation is a land-light solution to the agricultural crisis and can unlock a future where everyone has access to healthy, nutritious, and affordable food.
🇮🇹 Why Italy Should Embrace, Not Ban, Cultivated Meat
Italy’s right-wing government has proposed banning the production of lab-grown meats to protect the nation's heritage, which has provoked controversy with European scientists warning against inhibiting crucial research and development in cellular agriculture, which is poised to hit the global mainstream.
The cultivation of proteins can stabilize the climate, transform land use, improve human health, and protect food security. It requires 99% less land to produce and at scale, can free up valuable terrain for the production of craft meats and regenerative farming.
The Italian Parliament should encourage European scientists to improve, not complicate, the global effort to scale this food frontier swiftly and responsibly.
SOCIAL FEAST 📱
🇭🇰 Hope for the Future: Reflections on Hong Kong's First Sustainable School Food Summit
Sonalie Figueiras, Founder and Editor-in-chief of Green Queen, participated in Hong Kong's first Sustainable School Food Summit. The summit was student-led and explored sustainability challenges associated with the food system, how to address these issues in the context of schools, and how students can be part of the change.
The morning culminated in a team of student leaders sharing the results of research that looked into the school lunches served at Chinese International School with calculations of their full planetary cost in comparison to the EAT-Lancet guidelines.
The event also featured a lunch/solution part, where the author tasted school lunches prepared by three of Hong Kong's best chefs.
All three meals met tough-to-achieve criteria and will be served over the next 12 months by four school catering companies, including Maxims and Compass, who serve over 8 million lunches to 50 schools around Hong Kong.
😬 This Ain’t It, Aubrey: Did Aubrey Plaza's ‘Got Milk?’ Ad Backfire?
Aubrey Plaza released a new Got Milk? ad on social media which showcases a parody of a "wood milk" product before stating that milk alternatives are not real milk.
Aubrey's main fanbase is Gen Z and Millennials, who have the lowest milk consumption of any generation, making the ad a bad fit for the target audience.
The timing of the ad was also poor, coming just days after an explosion that killed 18,000 dairy cows made international news, causing people to reconsider milk.
💰 Investing in Our Planet: A Call to Action for Climate Finance
Climate tech accounted for 25% of all venture investments last year, raised $40bn across ≈1000 ventures and growth deals, and brought in $400bn in enterprise value over the last three years.
Only 16% of climate finance needs are currently being met, and an estimated $3.4 trillion in mitigation finance is needed annually across sectors in 2020–2025.
Climate finance must increase by at least 590% – to USD 4.35 trillion annually by 2030 to meet our climate objectives.
EAR FOOD 🎵
🧗🏽 Climbing the Plant-Based Slope of Enlightenment
In this episode, the evolution and future prospects of the plant-based food industry are discussed.
Despite a period of disillusionment, consumer demand for plant-based foods remains strong, and sales are projected to continue to grow. To ensure continued growth, the industry must focus on three pillars: Innovation, Accessibility, and Sustainability.
This includes addressing nutritional concerns, offering global flavours, emphasizing food service and prepared frozen meals, committing to sustainable sourcing and regenerative agriculture practices, and raising awareness of the health and environmental benefits of plant-based food.
Want the transcript for this podcast? Click here
🌱 The Real Numbers Behind the Plant-Based Growth
In this episode, Bloomberg's Senior Research Analyst, Jen Bartashus, discusses the real numbers behind the plant-based innovation trend and how it is affecting the industry.
They analyze the GFI State of the Industry Report and talk about the difference between a trend and a fad. The podcast also covers the problem with IRI numbers and the significance of indicators like the Biden BioTech and BioTech Manufacturing Goals.
The discussion also touches on how the growth of tech chips in the U.S. is impacting the growth of plant-based innovation.
VISUAL DELIGHT 🎥
🧬 Ginkgo Bioworks' Annual Ferment Conference Brought Together Synthetic Biology Leaders
Ginkgo Bioworks, which is building the leading platform for cell programming and biosecurity, hosted their annual conference called Ferment which brings together stakeholders from the synthetic biology community.
The conference brought together stakeholders from across the synthetic biology community, including customers, suppliers, academics, journalists, and many more.
There was a ‘Lightning Talks’ session that featured presentations from representatives of Synlogic, Arcaea, Ayana Bio, Allonnia, Optimvia, SaponiQx, Microba, Persephone, Lygos, Prokarium, and Sumitomo.
Check out the full conference!
🔬 The State of the Industry 2022: Cultivated Meat and Seafood
This webinar provides a global analysis of the nascent cultivated meat industry.
GFI covers the commercial landscape, investments, scientific progress, regulatory and public funding updates, and industry forecasts.
🌎 The Environmental Impacts of Cultivated Meat Production
In this webinar, GFI Lead Scientist Elliot Swartz, Ph.D., and CE Delft LCA Specialist Pelle Sinke, M.Sc., review the updated data on the environmental impacts of cultivated meat versus conventional meat.
Powered by data from over 15 companies across the cultivated meat supply chain, they address emissions, land use, water use, air pollution, feed conversion, and more.
Thanks for reading. Have an awesome week! 🙌🏾
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